How do I remove myself off a durable general power of attorney

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

I was asked to be a friend of mine’s durable power of attorney he is incarcerated and is just too much for me to handle I would like somebody else to take over how do I take myself off a durable general power of attorney

ANSWER BY MARGARET CROSS-BELIVEAU:

You are not locked into acting as someone fiduciary agent. Your friend may execute a new power of attorney electing someone else as his fiduciary. If he does not do this, you can resign by delivering the resignation in writing to him and anyone else who holds a copy of the power of attorney. [Read more…]

Why does my mother have to sign a ‘removal request’ from the title of the house when she had a quitclaim deed, done in 2005?

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

A Quitclaim, which turned ownership of the house to her three kids for one dollar was drawn up in 2005. Mother is now in assisted living and my brother is buying out his two siblings’ share. Why would the lenders’ title company want my mother to sign a ‘removal request’ to get her name off the title? Wouldn’t the Quitclaim have accomplished that? And, if not, will Medicaid consider the date of the quitclaim deed, or date of the removal request when we apply for Medicaid? We are in Massachusetts. No one has been able to answer this question. I have spent hours trying to get a definitive answer. Thank you. Is the term ‘Right of Survivorship, reserving for ourselves the Estate of Homestead’ the phrase that is requiring the ‘removal request? Was the property legally turned over to us with this Quitclaim deed so Medicaid can’t demand the proceeds from the sale of the house? [Read more…]

Arbitration agreement enforceable against spouse

If you’ve ever signed up for a credit card, a gym membership, cell phone service or any other number of services, you’ve probably signed an arbitration agreement without even realizing it. These are provisions buried deep within consumer contracts, loans and even employment agreements under which by signing the contract you’re agreeing not to take the company to court over any disagreement that may arise. Instead, you agree to have your case decided by an “arbitrator” — a supposedly neutral third party who’s chosen and paid by the company. This means you’re giving up important rights, such as the right to have a jury hear your case, the right to have the other side disclose evidence that could help you win and the right to appeal an unfair decision. [Read more…]

Valuation date is critical in property division

Sometimes a division of property in divorce is quite simple. The value of assets is very straightforward and splitting them is easy. But some assets can be much tougher to value and the issue can become quite contentious. This is particularly true when dealing with spouses’ interests in a business. That’s when the importance of the valuation date comes into play, as a recent Florida case indicates.

In that case, a couple with two children was divorcing. The husband had ownership interests in three companies that operated a number of restaurants across the state. At one point during the proceeding, a trial judge assessed the value of the couple’s marital estate as of the date the divorce petition was filed. But when the court issued its judgment, it used a later date to value the couples’ business interests. This difference mattered because the business earned significant profits between the two dates. [Read more…]

Wife’s claims from first divorce can’t be revived after failed reconciliation

When a couple takes the dramatic step of divorcing, they’re generally doing so for good reason. That’s why most couples who get divorced stay divorced. Still, some couples may decide that the divorce was a mistake and give marriage a second chance. Sometimes it works out, and sometimes it doesn’t. But as a recent case from North Carolina indicates, the award that a spouse received or was likely to receive the first time around will not dictate the award the second time around.

The couple in the case, Beverly and Peter Farquhar, divorced in 2004 after 10 years of marriage. A year later they decided to remarry. At the time, they still had pending claims from their divorce and they voluntarily agreed to dismiss these claims. [Read more…]

Woman who got $2M in divorce still gets support

For anyone who thinks alimony and support is just for those spouses who otherwise might not be able to support themselves, a recent Virginia decision says otherwise.

In that case, a woman whose husband was the primary breadwinner during their 27-year marriage got half of their $4.5 million marital estate in the divorce. This means she was awarded more than $2 million for her share.

Considering the modest lifestyle that the comparatively wealthy couple had maintained, a lot of people would say her share of the estate would have generated plenty of income for her to live on. [Read more…]

Can a court make you maintain life insurance for your ex-spouse?

In many divorces, one spouse is ordered to make monthly payments for “alimony” or “maintenance” to the other spouse to help that spouse support him/herself. Usually, the spouse receiving the payments is entitled to keep receiving them unless he or she remarries or starts “cohabiting” or living with someone else as a partner.

But what if the spouse who’s paying the support passes away sooner than expected, leaving the other spouse without any means of support? [Read more…]

Does a property that is held by siblings as “tenants in common” automatically pass on to the surviving spouse when one dies?

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

My husband and his three siblings were deeded land via a “quit claim” by their parents. One of the siblings has passed away and did not have a will. Does his share automatically pass on to his spouse or would it pass on to his children? [Read more…]

Can the father have any custody if he left me when I was 5 weeks pregnant?

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

The father left me when I was 5 weeks pregnant and has not been involved …he is wanted for 3 warrants. He is a recovering drug addict.

ANSWER BY MARGARET CROSS-BELIVEAU:

First the paternity must be established.  If you did not name the father on the birth certificate and you were not married, he would have to petition the court to establish paternity.  Once paternity is established, he can request visitation or joint custody.  At this point, you can request child support.  However, if he does petition the court, he will be arrested at that time on the outstanding warrants.  His arrest and/or conviction is not enough to completely sever his parental rights.  The family court would have to make a separate determination that he is an unfit parent.

Legal Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

Beliveau Law Group: Massachusetts | Florida | New Hampshire

The family law attorneys at the Beliveau Law Group provide legal services for probate, estate administration, and trust administration. The law firm has offices and attorneys in Naples, Florida; Waltham, Massachusetts; and Salem, New Hampshire.

How do I make the Trustee of my irrevocable Trust make good on an addendum that was written into the Trust?

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

The trust states at ages 21, 25, and 35, I could withdrawal certain percentages of the principal for family needs.  At age 25 instead of taking 33% of 1.4 million, I agreed to purchase a home, go on vacation, and buy my now wife wedding ring. In the addendum, it states if I would like to purchase the home that I’m living in now I can have the opportunity to do so for $100,000.  Due to the loss of my uncle, the administrator is now my grandmother and she’s not holding true to the trust. She has taken away all my rights to know what’s going on with the trust. I no longer get statements monthly, so I have no idea where I stand with my money. There are several things that she does that I believe go against the trust and I don’t know what to do about it. I am 28 years old and have never been given anything other than a car when I was 17 years old and this house. We all just verbally agreed to purchase and got an attorney involved. Now she refuses to pay the inheritance tax for me to stay in the home, so I’m facing homelessness with my wife, two children, two animals and my mother. I need help and I don’t know where to turn. 

ANSWER BY MARGARET CROSS-BELIVEAU:

If your grandmother, as Trustee, is not following the terms of the trust, you have the right as a beneficiary to compel her to do so.  You may also have the right to remove and replace her as Trustee.  If the Trustee is found to be at fault, you can request that the trust pay the legal fee.  You need to meet with an experienced trust and estates attorney.

Legal Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

Beliveau Law Group: Massachusetts | Florida | New Hampshire

The probate litigation attorneys at the Beliveau Law Group provide legal services for probate, estate administration, and trust administration. The law firm has offices and attorneys in Naples, Florida; Waltham, Massachusetts; and Salem, New Hampshire.